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Keralan Chicken Curry

Keralan Chicken Curry

Keralan curry is a less common know curry from Kerala; a southern region in India. It is fragrant and features a rich fennel and sweet spice base. For this recipe we are taking that tremendous flavour and using it to marinate and season crispy chicken thighs; which are served with a fresh slaw and raita dipping yogurt.


For The Chicken

1 kg thigh fillet cutlet (approx. 6 thighs with bone)

6 tbsp full fat yogurt

6 cloves garlic crushed

3 cm piece of ginger finely grated

1 tbsp coriander seeds

5 dried whole chilli’s approx.

4cm or 2 tsp chilli flakes

5 cardamom pods

1 tbsp fennel seeds

½ tsp black peppercorns

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 pinch fresh grated nutmeg

2 tsp course pink salt

100g plain flour

250 ml light olive oil enough to shallow fry

For The Raita

2 cups natural yogurt

1 spring onion, finely sliced

4 sprigs fresh mint, diced

1 large Lebanese cucumber, grated and squeezed

½ lemon, juiced

1 pinch of ground coriander

1 pinch salt

1 pinch sugar

Simple Slaw

½ small red cabbage

1 medium carrot

¼ cup corn kernels (jar or frozen/thawed)

1 handful flat leaf parsley or coriander



  1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C fan forced. Line a large baking tray with paper.
  2. In a large bowl, add the crushed garlic, fine grated ginger and yogurt. Slice the chicken thighs in half width ways and marinate in the yogurt mix. Place in the fridge for 30mins.
  3. In a mortar and pestle add all the dry spices excluding the salt. Crush all the seeds and remove the cardamom shells. Continue to grind the spices till fine, add the salt and continue till smooth. In a wide bowl, add the seasoning and plain flour. Whisk to combine well.
  4. For the raita; add the yogurt, spring onion, mint, grated cucumber, lemon juice and spices. Mix well and place in the fridge to chill.
  5. To make the slaw; finely slice the cabbage, grate the carrot, roughly tear the parsley or coriander, drain and add the corn kernels to a bowl. Drizzle with a dash of olive oil, squeeze of lemon and a pinch of salt. Mix and set aside.
  6. In a medium fry pan, add enough olive oil for a 1-inch depth. Heat the oil on medium to high. Test by placing the handle of a wooden spoon in the oil and it begins to bubble.
  7. Using your hands, add one piece of chicken into the flour mix and coat well. Shake the chicken from excess flour and slowly lower it into the oil with tongs to prevent any splash. Do not overcrowd the chicken. Rotate each piece till browned on each side, 1-2 mins, drain well and add to the baking tray. Place the chicken in the oven for 10 mins while you plate.
  8. To serve on a large board; place the salad in a nice cluster in the middle, stack the chicken on the salad and place a good size bowl of raita on the side. This can also be enjoyed with your favourite pita bread.


You can use preround spices for this recipe if you do not have access to a mortar and pestle.

You can use any cut of chicken meat for this recipe though we recommend thighs for a soft juicy texture.

For the best results we only use Australian organic produce and ingredients.


Recipe by Sara Stidwill from Dukkah and Spice

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